The Official White-Tears Quiz: How a Black-Student Protest Terrified and Outraged White People

iStock
iStock

Instead of reading this as a news story, please use this article as an official measuring stick for your white-tears awareness. The answer key is at the bottom.

Advertisement

A Washington state college was deluged with a torrential downpour of low-sodium, gluten-free white tears after butt-hurt white people freaked out when minority students asked for a white-privilege timeout.

Black and transgender students at Evergreen State College in Olympia, Wash., were fed up with discrimination at the school and staged a protest. According to The Olympian, the protesters issued a statement that read:

What started out as anti-black comments on social media has turned into the dismissal of the rights of students and femmes of color, physical violence by police, and false sentencing of students protesting. Black trans disabled students are actively being sought out and confronted by campus police constantly, police are refusing to explain their actions and harassment. Students will not stand for this anymore, as students of color have never felt comfortable on campus and have not been treated equally.

But it was the students’ call for a “Day of Absence and Day of Presence” demonstration that induced a cacophony of Caucasian crying that eventually dampened the entire campus.

When students called for white teachers and students to leave campus for a day, white people on campus:

A. Said “Hell yeah, a day off!” and left happily
B. Kept playing Hacky Sack
C. Asked for an open and honest dialogue with the minority students to foster better understanding
D. Got butt-hurt

Professor Bret Weinstein (should we even have to mention that Weinstein is white? For most of my life I thought I knew the only black “Bret” in the continental United States, but I later found out his name was Donald, and—because of his childhood affinity for peanut butter and jelly sandwiches—people eventually nicknamed him “Bread”) heard about the suggestion and fired off an email to First Peoples Multicultural Adviser Rashida Love. (Should I mention that Rashida Love is—you know what? I don’t think we need to.)

Advertisement

In the email, Weinstein said that asking white people to leave the campus was “a show of force, and an act of oppression in and of itself.” Weinstein added—presumably through eyes wet with the tears of his oppressed people—that “on a college campus, one’s right to speak—or to be—must never be based on skin color.”

When the black student protesters heard about the email, they:

A. Sat down and remained quiet, knowing that’s how black people have gotten all the rights and freedoms they enjoy
B. Wrote a memo to themselves about their treatment and then gave the memo to a friend to leak to the press so they could snitch to the Senate
C. Cried black tears
D. Said, “Ohh no, he didn’t!” listened to verses of Bonecrusher’s “Never Scared,” posse’d up and went to confront Weinstein

Advertisement

According to a press release by student and janitor Blake Vincent, about 50 students marched to Weinstein’s office chanting,“These racist teachers have got to go.” When they reached him, they read a statement: “We come here as students against campus racism and against anti-blackness on campus, and we would like to reach out to students of color in the humanities as well as the sciences that we are here to support, and we want to dismantle anti-blackness campuswide. We want to give some sense of solidarity and provide safety in and outside of classes.”

When Professor Weinstein heard about the student protest, he:

A. Explained himself to the students, opening a dialogue and making it a teachable moment
B. Listened intently to the other side of the argument
C. Said, “Fuck that thing I previously said about students’ ‘right to speak—or to be’; I’m gonna take over this conversation, and if they won’t listen to me, I’m gonna call the police”

Advertisement

Vincent said the students “were understandably upset but were not overtly threatening or harmful in any way.” Weinstein tried to take over the conversation, but students began chanting, “These racist teachers have got to go,” and some of Weinstein’s students surrounded the students of color and verbally attacked them.

Then a campus police officer showed up, followed by the campus police chief, so the students decided to go to the campus square, where state troopers and the Olympia Police Department “began to threaten students with mace and arrest.” Eventually the students were dispersed by three police agencies.

Advertisement

Weinstein now says he feels “unsafe on campus, and the conservative press has jumped on the cause, accusing the students of trying to “murder” Weinstein.

Advertisement

Of course, some of the college’s white students have complained that the students of color have gone too far and have created a hostile learning environment by asking them to leave college for a day.

Advertisement

To be fair, the black students were absolutely wrong to suggest that they wanted to live and learn in spaces that excluded other races. The idea that they could stiff-arm an entire group of people simply based on the color of their skin is horrendous. It is indefensible that a group would knowingly place hurdles or barriers that made it harder for a race of people to be employed or receive an education. That is the ultimate symbol of privilege!

It’s almost as if those black students were acting ...

A. White
B. White
C. White
D. All of the above

*Answer key:

This is America. Black students’ complaints about racism, police presence and discrimination are easily dismissed, but Bret Weinstein is oppressed by 50 black students who do not pay him and have no authority over his employment. White women singing songs at solidarity marches and Ku Klux Klan rallies are expressing First Amendment rights, but protesting a teacher at an institution of higher learning warrants a police presence if you’re black. Law-enforcement officers spreading across campus as a “precaution,” threatening black people with mace for talking, is understandable, but Weinstein is the one who feels unsafe. 

Advertisement

The answer is always white fragility. The answer is always white tears. The answer to everything in America is always white.

World-renowned wypipologist. Getter and doer of "it." Never reneged, never will. Last real negus alive.

DISCUSSION

iniquitydenmother
IniquityDenMother

I studied evolutionary biology like this fuckwad professor. His e-mail pissed me off on about a million different levels. The whining his opinion was not wanted, the incredible pedantry, the white-guy mansplaining race issues to a black woman, the self-promotion/assumption of superiority (“I’d be happy to teach you about race relations through the lens of biology, since I’ve done it before” bullshit), and using a biology term to basically say “I don’t see color” (“put the phenotype aside”).

I’m surprised he didn’t throw a reference to melanin in.


I got confused by the second paragraph of that e-mail though - the whole thing about people leaving voluntarily vs. telling a group to go away - so I went back to read some more about it at the student newspaper.

Apparently the Day of Absence had been held before and the format was POC didn’t show up on campus and held events elsewhere, but this year it was decided to flip the format and have white people stay home and let the POC take over the campus instead, which is pretty fucking awesome.

So basically, Professor Asshole was all white-teary that instead of the POC having a public protest that allowed him get on with his regular day (and allowed him to not think about what it meant and potentially drum up some empathy), they were instead asking him and other white people to be the “Absent” ones. I mean, god forbid he feel for a single day what it’s like to be excluded from an institution because of his skin color.

So basically, he felt the POC congregating off campus was a proper way to protest/make a statement, but telling white people to instead congregate off campus was JUST WRONG. To continue a GoT theme:


This timeline shows he’s been butthurt over changing race relations at the school for months. (He was even on Tucker Carlson last month over this whole thing. I can’t bring myself to watch it right now because I’m about to have dinner.) No wonder the students are so pissed off at him and the school administration for not really doing much to muzzle him at the barest minimum, or punish him at all. In the face of him repeatedly trying to tell the students he knows best because he’s an evolutionary biologist (*eyeroll*), I think they’ve exhibited admirable levels of restraint.